Indian, Pakistani Troops
Fight In Kashmir

JAMMU, India (Reuters) - Indian and Pakistani troops fired mortars and heavy machineguns at each other across the frontier in the disputed Himalayan region of Kashmir overnight as the nuclear rivals struggle to avert war.
Indian police said Wednesday the exchanges were intense across both the Indian-Pakistan border and also the cease-fire line dividing the two armies in the frontline state.
``It was an unprovoked firing from across the border last night to which our troops responded effectively,'' a senior police official told Reuters, adding no deaths were reported.
Several people have been killed in daily firefights in Kashmir since tensions flared after the December 13 suicide attack on India's parliament, which New Delhi blamed on Pakistan-based Islamic militants fighting its rule in Kashmir.
Both sides have heavily reinforced their 3,310 km (2,070 mile) border stretching from Kashmir to the Arabian Sea and India has not ruled out military strikes if Pakistan does not meet its demand to wipe out the two Kashmiri groups blamed for the parliamentary attack.
India has welcomed Pakistan's detention of two key leaders and several other members of the rebel groups, but it is not yet clear if that will be enough to defuse the crisis which has raised fears of a fourth war between the regional giants.
Leaders from both nations are due in Nepal for a regional summit from Friday, but it remains unclear if they will meet separately on the sidelines over the latest crisis.
India and Pakistan have fought three wars since independence from Britain in 1947 -- two of them over Kashmir.

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